President Trump Confirms He Won’t Release Taxes – California Senators want to hold future candidates accountable

In response to President Trump’s unprecedented refusal to share basic information with American public, new bill will require that all presidential candidates release tax returns in order to appear on California ballot

Monday, January 23, 2017

Sacramento – During President Donald Trump’s campaign he told the American people that he would release his tax returns, but yesterday, he officially broke that promise. He won’t release his tax returns, despite 40 years of precedent from past presidents and presidential candidates.

“He’s obviously hiding something,” Senator Mike McGuire said. “President Trump says the American people don’t care. He’s dead wrong. We know, in fact, that the American people do care about transparency and accountability and tax returns are one of the best tools California voters have to weigh any potential conflicts of interests their future leader has encumbered. California didn’t pick this fight, but we will respond to this unprecedented action and secrecy and ensure voters have the information they need to make the most important choice they have – voting for President.”

That’s just one of the reasons that Senator Scott Wiener and Senator Mike McGuire introduced the Presidential Tax Transparency and Accountability Act to require presidential candidates to make five years of their tax returns public, starting with the next presidential election in California.

SB 149, introduced last week, will require a candidate for President, in order to have his or her name placed upon the general election ballot, to file his or her income tax returns for the 5 most recent taxable years with the Secretary of State at least 70 days before that election. The returns would also be made available to the public on the Secretary of State’s website.

“President Trump can claim all day long that the American people don’t care about his tax returns, but public opinion polls show that people do care -- and they should. If the President of the United States has business dealings with Russia, with China, or with any other foreign government that may impact his decision making, the people need to know. If the President is going to personally financially benefit from major policy or international decisions, the people need to know. The President should be making decisions based on what’s best for the American people. Ignoring basic transparency and accountability is not leadership, and we must take action,” said Senator Scott Wiener.  

Prior to Donald Trump’s refusal to release any tax returns, every president since Jimmy Carter (over 40 years) have released at least one year of tax returns. During the 2016 Presidential election, Hillary Clinton (Democratic) and Jill Stein (Green) both released their tax returns.

Contrary to what President-Elect Trump has stated in public, that Americans don’t care about his tax returns, according to a new ABC News/Washington Post poll, 74 percent of respondents believe President-Elect Trump should release his tax returns. This poll shows consistent results from an earlier poll conducted by Quinnipiac University back in August of 2016.

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